Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Operation: Don't Notice I Don't Have A Job Yet

Today is the day I am officially freaking out that I haven't heard yea or nay from the job people. I really want this job. They've checked my references, they've given me four different interviews, I'm sure they've run a background check and now know that I didn't use to go around killing people. They've probably run a credit check and know that I need a job so I can adjust my student loan repayments to match my salary.

So why nothing? It sucks people, it really truly sucks. But I refuse to wallow more than that last paragraph. So today, I'm being proactive about occupying my damn time. It works when dating a man who's not working on your schedule, and I'm betting it will work for a job offer I've yet to receive but would love to get.

So what's on the agenda for today? I'm so glad you asked. First, I'm washing clothes. I want to do that more often, but it's not always up to me when I can wash clothes because there are four people who live in this house and honestly, necessity is the only thing that grants me uninterrupted use of the machines. I hate washing clothes and not seeing process through to the end, so there will be folding and hanging in my future. How is that a good distraction? I'm kinda domestic, deal with it.

Concurrently with the washing clothes, I will be learning a new song on the piano. Just a portion of it actually. A friend of mine wants this song in a recording she's doing and she asked me to learn it so I am. I like it, it's not to difficult to play, so I'm thinking it will happen. That's also a bonus for Easy because he's been asking me to play for him and up to this point I've refused. But if I play for her, I'll definitely play for him. The thing is that I've known this girl since she was 12 and we were in our high school choir together. I accompanied the choir the entire time I was a member and even a year before, so I definitely can play for her without feeling weird about it.

After that's done, my mother and I are going to see the new Tyler Perry movie that's out. After seeing The Family That Preys, I didn't think I could see another of his movies that I knew was just going to be straight foolishness. Knowing that the man could put together a real film (that movie, Precious, For Colored Girls), it was hard to accept going to see the same Madea fluff. But I saw the previews and couldn't stop laughing. I do love the spring/summer time with it's ability to make more people go see movies so I don't have to see them alone.

And of course tonight is American Idol and America's Next Top Model. I know I've been slipping on my recaps/opinions. But seeing as how my computer actually turned on 2 days in a row, I think I'll do those tonight. And if I have some downtime, I'll actually update my other blogs too! I have a lot to get done today people, so I guess I better get to it.

I Hate My Computer

Today is the first time I turned on my computer and it actually loaded up. Apparently it's issues come and go. They come and go and come and go. Now they're gone. I'm sure they'll be back soon. I can't wait until I can get my Macbook and not have to deal with this shit anymore.

Speaking of my ability to make new purchases, I still haven't heard from the amazing job I was hoping I'd get. I haven't lost hope yet. They called last week with a question about the contact information for one of my references. He was out of the office, so I gave them his cell phone number. That was one week ago. I can only hope there is still good news to come and I will hear from them soon.

I got my GRE scores in the mail finally. The scores are good but the percentages I was disappointed about. I did do well on the writing and I feel like I did well enough to get into graduate school. I'm pretty convinced I'll go for a master's in public health or health administration. I may still decide to take it again just to remove any doubt, but we'll see.

This is random and not really an update, but I feel really happy right now. I'm quite satisfied with my relationship with my family. I've been spending more time with my cousins and aunt and uncle and that was one of my goals if you remember back when I was doing a weekly update of how I was doing on my goals.

Also, my friends are great and awesome and all that. I have hope for the immediate improvement of my career situation.

I honestly haven't spent as much time on my hobbies as I would like, but I'm kind of taking an unofficial break until I sort out things with my schedule for work (fingers crossed!)

And of course, my love life is amazing. Couldn't be better. Easy is absolutely amazing. The best man I've ever known. I'm so lucky to have him in my life. Even if he did get drunk over the weekend and ruin the surprise he had planned for proposing this summer. I may or may not tell that story in a future post. But yeah, he's the best person I've ever dated. But enough gushing.

If my computer acts like it has sense more than two days in a row, I'll be posting tomorrow and putting up posts on my other blogs to without e-mail. Looking forward to catching up on reading every one's blogs too.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

My New Style, Or Rather, My Updated Style

I've been thinking about what I want my style to be.  I've had this post saved as a draft for over a month because I wanted to be sure about it before I claimed it on record.

It has to be something that fits who I am as a person and how I want to be perceived by others. I have learned a lot from watching What Not To Wear over the years (and being raised by my mother), so I want to make sure I'm making the right statement with my clothes.

What I have so far is that I want to be casual, sexy, girly, and classic, with just a hint of the current trend.

Casual: I usually am overdressed, and I'd rather not be that way all the time anymore. I want to be dressed appropriately, but something that can be dressed up or down. I like clothes that can be worn with cowboy boots (not that I own any) but also strappy sandals. This picture below of strappy sandals, is exactly what I mean when I say casual. See how the shoes are basic black strappy sandals? They're perfect for wearing with jeans or with a fancy tube top dress. I know this because I did it two Saturdays ago. Plus, the twine that goes around the whole base helps keep the look casual. The strap around the ankle looks quite sexy, the tall height of the heel is girly, and the black leather material is quite classic for a strappy sandal. The hint of the current trend is the platform under the toe.

Sexy: I've been working hard on being healthy and making sure my body looks the best it can. I want to show that off, but not too overtly. The best way to do this is clothing that shows a curvy shape or a lot of skin. Like a tube top. I'm loving my shoulders and arms more and more as I get in better shape and this tube top picture below is the exact thing to show them off. The floral print helps make it girly. The cotton material keeps it casual and the sweetheart neckline keeps it classic. The hint of the current trend is the hard-to-see-in-the-picture zipper down the front.

Girly: I'm girly, and I want to embrace it. While I love those collared plaid shirts, they're just not me, so I don't own any luckily. I'm not for making something not traditionally girly appear that way. I'm more on-the-nose. The floral print dress pictured below does it for me. While it's not form-fitting, it still show enough of my shape when I move to be sexy. I've worn it with both strappy sandals and flat boots with studs in them (as close as I'll get to cowboy boots for now), so it has a casual aspect. And the tube top summer dress is a classic, just look at summer styles pretty much from the 60s and 70s on. The trendy aspect is the tiers in the dress. Trust me, they're nothing new, they're just in right now.

Classic: Jennifer Lopez talks about knowing your lane and staying in your lane as a host on American Idol. I think that could apply to fashion as well as music. I like to try new things, but I'm still a very predictable person in some respects, and I think my clothes should reflect that. The leather jacket pictured below is the perfect example of classic. I will be wearing this blazer for the next 30 years unless fashion drastically changes. It's a great classic shape that I wore to a job interview, to a club, out to dinner, out bowling, and to church. It works with anything, seriously! Because it shows my shape, it's sexy and girly. Because it's blue instead of black and leather instead of stuffy wool, it's casual. And because it's the boyfriend style with the shape and sleeve style, it's trendy. I love making trends work for me. Rolling up the sleeve on a jacket looks downright ridiculous on my small frame, but getting a jacket that's cropped length sleeve and wearing a long sleeve underneath provides that same look without appearing as if I've robbed my older sister's closet.

Those four components of my style are pretty essential to who and I am and how I want to be perceived. Stores that fit that bill (at least in the items I would purchase from there) include: Delia's for everyday, Dillard's for when I have more to spend, and LOVE Culture for items that are so far into the trendy that I don't want to spend a whole bunch on them.

Does anyone else think this much about their clothes/style? It's important to me and has helped with shopping. I don't buy anything unless it's casual, girly, sexy, classic, and a bit trendy. It keeps me from being overdressed, from spending money on something I won't get a lot of wear out of, and from going too far into trendy territory. Plus, I always feel like me no matter what I have on. Or at least that will be the case once I fully phase out my older clothes. What's your style?

As I move further and further to the end of my 20s, establishing a signature style that will carry me to and through my 30s is essential. I can't just wear whatever trendy thing pops up on Gossip Girl (or the Forever 21 version of said outfit) anymore. Not that I ever did, but I think you get my point.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Computer Issues and Other Issues

Before, I was quite sure that I was over PCs and ready to move on to the Mac and Apple products I have previously described as evil. To me, they are now the lesser of two evils. I wasn't able to use my computer the last couple of days because my computer wouldn't load. I had to post from my Blackberry. Anyone who lives in the wild 100s in Chicago who uses Sprint will tell you that was no easy task.

I wasn't able to spell check or anything. But I have returned to a point on my computer, somewhere in the past where it could actually boot up. I don't know where that point was, nothing seems to be missing... yet. But I hope to avoid such issues when I get a MacBook. That day will be here before the end of the year, hopefully. That explains why I didn't put up a post about Dancing With The Stars today.

Also, I was sick. I hate getting sick and I keep getting sick. I'm blaming my parents house and the fact that it's always cold here. Chicago is still in the 40s. WTF! It's the end of April, I don't understand. And while all the technology I know and love is either reliably or surprisingly, F-ing up, my Kindle decided to get in on the fun.

True to form, my warranty has passed and now the fun begins. There's some sort of electromagnetic disturbance on the screen. I'm hoping I can take it into Best Buy and they can fix it. If not, I'll have to depend on Amazon to fix it without demanding I purchase a new one. From what I've read on the website, resetting the screen is a relatively easy fix that shouldn't even require my warranty, but we shall see.

The point to the ranty post? Back up your shit! I have an external hard drive that I protect like it is offspring. On it, I have every vital everything for both my laptop and my Kindle. So it would take a crazy miracle and my laptop, Kindle, external hard drive, and BlackBerry would all have to fail at once for me to lose everything. If there was a fire, I wouldn't grab everything. Just the external hard drive.

There's one more point, get your own place where you control the temperature. I swear if I'm gone from this house for more than a week, I come back and immediately get sick. Chicago is literally making me sick. I can't wait until my life is on to the next phase. And despite the rage I'm sure this post conveys, I'm actually in a great mood. No one I wanted to stay got kicked off DWTS, and I finally figured out the perfect drug combo to make getting sick bearable if it's going to keep happening.

Monday, April 18, 2011

America's Next Top Model, Top 6

I didn't get to watch ANTM on Wednesday because the network in Chicago was showing a Cubs game. But luckily, they re-show episodes on Sunday, so I got to watch.

This week, the girls learned about putting together a portfolio and learned they were heading to Morocco. I'm glad they went prior to the protests and stuff. It's pretty exciting. Who does an eco-friendly suit at a landfill? Landfills are not eco friendly. Maybe they would be if they sorted the material. Sigh.

Kasia: her portfolio shots were good, but she only had 4 photos. I can't remember which one is missing. I just never have much to say about her. I like what she said about being happy with her body.

Molly: everyone else was saying how they're glad the issues with Alexandria got sorted, and Molly is still being negative. I was saying I liked that she's a trooper, but I don't like that she's a complainer. Her potty mouth is starting to wear me down. And she was so mean to her driver. And she should have kept her thoughts to herself about Alexandria cause it showed on her face and it distracted her from her own performance. Everyone else was making it happen for the photo shoot, but she won't shut the fuck up and stop being negative. Everyone is starting to notice. And I'm so sick of her constantly threatening to have a bitch fit. There's a time for it. Building your career is not that time. Hopefully she'll take in what they said at panel and do better next week.

Brittani: of course they launched in with her talking about the elimination. I wish Tyra had sent her home. I have to say I was taken aback when she apologized to Alexandria. I guess we'll see if it sticks. She was also terrible with the directions. She took a lot of risks at her photo shoot. Girl was down in the garbage. I hope she gets a great photo after that display. Her photo was great and I'm starting to be convinced she's actually learned her lesson.

Hannah: I hope she goes to Morocco, she seems so excited about it. I'm surprised I don't have more to say about her. She used to be one of my favorites, but now I'm like meh.

Jaclyn: she feels she's grown as a woman, I agree. I like a self-aware person. And poor jaclyn, so terrible with direction. I have to say I'm not sad she's leaving. I thought I would be. Whatever.

Alexandria: I was glad to see her being the bigger person when Brittani apologized. She's smart though not to assume it's all roses from here on out. I'm so glad she did well on her go-sees and won that last challenge.
That bag and dress were so gorgeous.

Next week, they show an episode with behind the scenes footage. I may or may not blog about that.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Finding The Perfect Wedding Dress

I am doing unconventional thinking when it comes to wedding dresses. I've actually been dress shopping once in my life. I was in a cotillion when I was 16. I had a wedding dress from David's Bridal that cost hundreds of dollars for the occasion. I feel lucky to have gone through that because I learned a couple of things that will keep me from making similar mistakes in the future.

This time around, I wanted to walk into the store knowing what I wanted. I have pretty much figured that out with only 2 hours of searching online. My dream dress is a satiny silk or chiffon with a lace overlay. It's A-line and floor length. It has a sweetheart neckline but isn't strapless. It isn't white. It has to have some sort of pattern or print on it, I'd prefer floral or nature themed. And I'd like it to have a natural waist with some sort of belt or sash at the waist. There are a ton of dresses with this description, and I saw some amazing ones that would only cost a couple hundred dollars. This makes the future budget bride in me swoon.

If it were up to me, I'd go buy one of these today and be done with it. I know it's the most important dress I'll ever wear, but I only want to spend a couple hundred dollars on it because I'm so tiny and so much money will have to be spend on good alterations. And I know I'll never wear it again and likely won't be able to sell it to anyone else.

Here are some inspiration photos.

1. Sweetheart Modified A-Line 2. Champagne Eyelet 3. Organza Flora A-Line

The first one had something about it I just really like. I could do without the white or the train though. The second one is champagne in color and I love that it's not strapless, but it's a little too full to give me that perfect A-line shape I really want. The third is just perfect. If I could add a little dove grey jacket over it, it's everything I dreams of, except the material. I just love it though.

I had half a mind to go try on that third one. Only an intervention from my friend Michelle would have saved me. Well, also the thought of Easy thinking I'm completely crazy. Who buys a wedding dress without having decided on a wedding theme or wedding colors? That's not why he would think I was crazy, that's just why I would agree with him.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

American Idol, Top 8

I was heartbroken last week when Pia went home. I think we all thought Stefano was leaving. I love him so much, but I would have preferred Pia to stay. I guess I have to be even more vigilant now with who I vote for.  This week, the theme is music from the movies. I love movies and movie musicals so I'm loving this theme.  One gripe, why is Randy Jackson always name dropping? Lol, whatever.

My categories are:
Great, I'd be happy if you won
Lauren Alaina: she's singing a Hannah Montana song. Her voice is gonna tap dance all over Miley Cyrus was my first thought. But it works cause she's young. And the mentors were saying exactly the same thing. I really like this song and I just knew I would love her singing. And I really did love it. She improved to me this week. I'm a Pia fan who will be giving my Pia votes to Lauren. She's the only chick left I like.
Stefano Langone: I know he loves rhythm and blues, so I was super excited as soon as they said his song was from the movie Boomerang. I love love love that movie, so I knew he could make me glad he was the one who stayed if he picked the right song. And he's doing a Boyz II Men song! I'm so happy he isn't doing that love shoulda brought you home song. I figured I'd hate his phrasing like last week, but he got better. And when he stares into the camera, my knees melt. I loved it. I could hear all that his voice was able to do. Not a lot of people can match Wanye, but he had it. I'm back on the Stefano bandwagon.
Jacob Lusk: I just love him so much and I was hoping he would sing an uplifting song this week. When they said he was singing something from the pursuit of happyness, I got excited. I was hoping for a song that he didn't end up singing. But the song he sang was truly amazing. The man just has a voice that climbs to heights impossible for others. I felt like I was at a concert while watching him sing. It was just amazing. Did I mention it was amazing? I def don't want him in the bottom three any more.

Really good, but you're not my american idol
Paul McDonald: he sang that song from Risky Business. I think it fits him very well. And his voice is so unique. That being said, it took me a minute to get into it cause his voice is...soft? I don't know that soft is the right word, but he definitely owned that stage. Well, his clothes did and he took a close second. I really felt the performance more than the singing. And why was he holding cymbals he never actually played? It was enjoyable, but I didn't love it.
Scotty McCreery: doing a song from the movie pure country is a no-brainer. I assumed I would enjoy it like I always do. I don't know that I would love his albums enough to buy each thing he puts out should he win. So maybe he's not my american idol. But I sure as hell loved this song and will be throwing a few votes his way. His voice is just so amazing.

I didn't love it at all this week, sorry
Casey abrams: first can I say I'm really loving the facial hair trim. I couldn't even remember his last name at first. All I could think was Rogan, as in Seth Rogan. I know he's not conventional sexy, but I heart Casey. And I love his voice when he's rocking out and when not, so figured a Nat King Cole would allow him to sing well and play bass. I was looking forward to it so much. But then he switched to the Phil Collins, and I figured that would be good too cause it would give him a chance to rock out. But then he switched back and I was confused, but eager. He stuck to who he is as an artist and I liked that. But I wasn't blown away by the song. What can I say? Love him, but I wasn't blown away by that song. The judges loved it, but it missed me. Sorry.
Haley Reinhart: I can't remember the last time I was a fan of hers. But I was willing to give her another chance. I'm unfamiliar with Blondie, but that doesn't mean I won't still love her song choice. And I've never seen american giggolo, but so what. I definitely loved the way she looked. There are just some voices I don't like, my ear literally doesn't enjoy. And unfortunately, Haley's is one of them. I liked that song, and would to hear a version of it she doesn't sing. Next week, I'll be giving her another chance if she makes it through.
James Durbin: he's gonna rock out and that works. As long as I can hear him, I know I would enjoy the performance. I really do like this guy. He's just never been my favorite. His voice just is rock. And he held onto that song even though the mentors weren't into it. I can honestly say heavy metal is my least favorite rock music, but I really enjoyed this performance. I didn't love it, but I enjoyed it.

I plan to only vote for the people who I'd be brokenhearted if they left. That includes: Lauren, Stefano, Casey, and Jacob. If I got to choose the final three right now, it would be Lauren, Stefano, and Jacob.
I would vote for more, but I would hate to see any of those four go and I could live with any of the other four leaving.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Dancing With The Stars, Top 9

I missed Dancing With The Stars airing live because I was dealing with the hell that is unfolding in the airline industry right now. Those folks really need new planes. But I digress. I have found an online episode that I can see before ABC puts it online so I'll still have time to vote online! Just a note, if you're looking for the videos, they're off by one week for some reason, so you have to click the link for tonight's results shows to see last night's show.

Now that Wendy Williams is gone (thank God), I don't think there's anyone left that I just hate to watch dance, so I won't have a "bad" category per se, it'll just be for anyone who didn't impress me specifically this week. I'm really excited for what is to come with this Classical Week theme. I think it will really separate those with presence and technical skills from the rest of the pack.

Here are my categories:

You're So Great, I Want You In The Top Three
Karina Smirnoff and Ralph Macchio (Waltz): The judges didn' like him last week, but I thought he was fantastic. I think he'll be great at the waltz if he just fixes those weird ass hands. But I wasn't convinced he fixed the problem because during their video, he wasn't finishing his moves and that made his lines look icky. Really icky. Karina seems satisfied though, so perhaps it will be better in the dance. I do love their music, as I've loved most of the music. They did a good job of choosing songs that are really recognizable, at least they've appeared in multiple contemporary commercials. When the music started and they weren't dancing, I got worried. Len always fusses when there isn't enough dancing content, so I could only hope they would get it going and have a ton of content once she un-Juliet-ed herself. And oh my wow! Perhaps the lighting helped, I don't know and I don't care, he looked fantastic! His lines were much improved, he actually finished the moves. His shoulders creeped up, but then went back down. They had the elegance, the romance, and timing, everything a waltz could need. Finally! Someone gave me the happy feeling inside I've been waiting for (other than the professional troupe of course). I'd give it a 9, it was just fantastic!
Score: (8,8,9) At least Bruno agreed with me about the score. It was really just fantastic.

Kym Johnson and Hines Ward (Paso Doble): I know the man can dance, but I didn't know what to expect for this week. Usually when a star has a busy week, things go awry, but the football players always do well with the Paso, so I figured he'd be able to pull something off pretty amazing. After watching the video, I was a bit worried because he didn't seem to be getting the steps, but his determination really made me feel reassured. They take me on an emotional roller coaster with some of these video! As soon as the dancing began, I wasn't even a bit worried. It was just amazing. So tight and focused, very intense and right on the mark. He doesn't need lyrics to get a dance right. I was jumping out my seat watching them. It was something I would pay to see. Truly, it was. I would give it a 9. It was just fantastic.
Score: (9,8,8) People really expected higher scores than two 8s. But I think it was okay. He's tied for first place so far.

Mark Ballas and Chelsea Kane (Viennese Waltz): Anyone he dances with already starts off high in my book because I love his daring and innovative choreography. But Chelsea is really growing on me and I was looking forward to see what they would do to jazz up the classical music the entire episode. I figured they would be amazing in the Viennese Waltz, just like they were at the Waltz in the first or so episode this season. The video showed her really struggling, but the clothes never changed, so I assume this was just her first day learning or something like that. I have faith that Chelsea will be amazing. When the dancing started, I was actually confused at first. But then I figured out what they were doing and I was loving it. No one does whimsical like these two. I was entranced. He was like her puppet, but also her lover…? I'm not sure which specific Harry Potter characters they were, but it was both daring and classic all at once. I would give them a 9 if it were up to me. Len fussed but I guess they had enough traditional moves in it to appease him and maybe he'll give them a 7.
Score: (9,8,9) The took first place! I'm so excited for her. I think they deserved it because she's such a good dancer. And I'm really glad Len didn't give them a 7.

Maksim Chmerkovsiy and Kirstie Alley (Waltz): I absolutely love Kirstie and Maks so I really feel like they have to do horribly for me not to enjoy it. And I look forward to the video as much as the dancing. I know Kirstie won't be able to have her usual sass in this dance, so I'm excited to see how she'll add that pizazz in another way. The video reminds us that she is 60. But I have no worries; I'm sure this dance will be fabulous. I love this song and I thought it would be perfect for the waltz and perfect for these two because it has an intensity and a drama that fits them. I gotta say, I wasn't a huge fan of her hands and arms, but everything else was really good. Her legs and feet are always above par. It was really nice to see her softer side. Just wonderful. I'd give it an 8. The judges didn't like it nearly as much as I did. Looks like she'll be getting my extra votes tonight. Sorry Kendra.
Score: (7,7,8) I love it when Bruno agrees with me. They did good. But she does need to improve, I guess I'll grudgingly agree with the judges on that. Whatever.

I'm Liking What I See, But I Want More
Chelsie Hightower and Romeo (Paso Doble): Last week, the judges didn't like his performance as much I remember liking it, but I had more hope for this week. I doubt Romeo has any experience dancing to classical music, but he's good at catching the character of the dance. I just didn't know what to think about his footwork. After watching the video, then I was worried about him catching the character of the dance unless they do a basketball themed classical Paso. Not likely. When they started dancing, I was immediately loving it, though I wished he had as much power in his arms as she did. I absolutely loved the ending though and I really do love that song. Thanks to effective marketing, I now want diamonds and silhouettes. I figured they'd get good scores because they really evoked powerful emotions from the crowd. I'd give them an 8, but I really wanted more technical merit.
Scores: (7,8,8) Carrie Ann Inaba took off one point because of a lift. I hate when she does that. But looks like my 8 was accurate, yay!

Louis van Amstel and Kendra Wilkinson (Viennese Waltz): Her technical skills really improved last week, so I felt like she could handle this Classical week and the technical merit they'll be expected to show. I think the Viennese Waltz will be a good step forward for her as she's "learning to be a lady." Even though the video was silly, I figured she'd still be great. And when the music started I was laughing because I kept thinking of the movie Stepbrothers and the fucking Catalina wine mixer. But I focused back on DWTS and looked at their dancing. She looked great if you ignored her face. She looked terrified in her face, but the rest of her was graceful (except that one foot) and lovely. She made some mistakes, but I liked it overall. I'd give her a 7, but I may be overshooting what the judges give.
Score: (6,6,6) Yup, they liked it far less than I did. I still maintain she was better than "okay."

Cheryl Burke and Chris Jericho (Paso Doble): A side note first, I love Cheryl's new hairstyle. I love that color on her. But back to the dance. The video made me wonder if he could pull off the character of the dance, but I figured he'd be alright. He's freaking Chris Jericho after all. And by the end of the video, I was sure I was right. He went all WWE (or was it WWF? Whatever.) on the TV camera, and I was loving it. Again, I was loving the song selection. The producers really did good this week. But back to the dancing. This particular song doesn't really scream Paso to me, but Chris managed to come off as appropriately aggressive. His feet and legs looked a little weird with the big steps he was trying to take, but overall I liked it. I would give it a 7, just shy of an 8.
Score: (8,7,8) I agree with the scores. They were good scores, I just think he can do better.

You Did Alright
Dmitry Chaplin and Petra Nemcova (Paso Doble): I thought she was great last week, though not as great as the judges thought. I expect nothing less than amazing this week because she is so graceful that classical music just fits her. But the video showed her having a pretty hard time with the character of the dance. I was a bit worried, but I thought she might be able to pull it off. She looked pretty good while they were dancing, but just a little cartoonish. I think her makeup helped her face. Overall, I really liked it. I don't know what's up with my feelings about the dances this week and if I'm just expecting too much, but I don't love it. It made me laugh more than anything else. I'd give it a 7. The judges liked it waaay more than I did though.
Score: (8,7,8) A 7 is a good score for some, but I just know Petra can do better. I still like her though.

I'm Not Impressed This Week
Anna Trebunskaya and Sugar Ray Leonard (Viennese Waltz): What can I say, I'm just not a fan of his dancing. I guess he'll be alright this week, if he can get his posture better. We'll see. I was frustrated with his video talking about how hard it is for a boxer to be graceful and elegant. From my longtime crush on Muhammad Ali to hearing my dad talk about Sugar Ray, I just don't see how expecting a boxer to be graceful is some tall order. But I do love Tchaikovsky and was looking forward to the music if nothing else. I was tickled by him in those blue tights for the ballet class, but it did kind of give me more hope for his dancing. Before they got into the dance, I was liking them, but once they were out on the floor, my smile quickly faded to a frown. They'll get style points, but I honestly didn't like it. It just wasn't smooth like any waltz should be. He's just so awkward. Seriously, I wish they had just done the Viennese waltz and not tried to do those ballet moves. I would give them a 6. The judges liked it more than I did. They valued his entertainment value more than I de-valued his technical errors.
Score: (7,7,7) I completely disagree. But I will just show my displeasure by not voting for him.

This week, I voted for: Romeo and Chelsie, Kendra and Louis, Petra and Dmitry, Ralph and Karina, Hines and Kym, Chelsea and Mark, and Kirstie and Maks.
If I had to pick a Top 3, it would be: Ralph and Karina, Hines and Kym, and Chelsea and Mark.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Flying On Planes

Having spent so much time on planes and in airports, I had time for people watching. I remember flying as a small child.

I got to meet the pilot and got those cute airline wings to pin to my shirt. I wonder if small children still get that experience. With all the "advances" in airport security, showing a family the cockpit might be no longer advisable.

But as I de-board the plane, I can't help but hope that family patiently waiting for everyone else to leave is also waiting to let that cute 5 year old meet the pilot.
CeCe Savage

Quick Highlights of My Florida Trip

I really should be sleep right now, but I'm not, so I figured I'd write a post since I haven't had time all weekend. I will write a real post when I have the time, but I wanted to share some highlights.

1. After stalking ebay, and begging my parents to help me get my camera in Florida that came to Chicago, I started taking lots of photos. That led me to make a Flckr account. I added the photostream to my blog page and there's a link where you can check out all my photos I've added. It has the higlights from this weekend.

2. I've been having so much fun. I feel old as hell though! I forget sometimes that the people I know here go all the way back, like 8 years ago. Long time, but good times.

3.  It was the best decision ever to leave from Tallahassee even though we flew into Jacksonville. Not having to get a ride 2.5 hours away before our flight will make everyone's life easier in the afternoon.

4. When I get back to St. Louis, I have to rush off to Chicago because I have a meeting with the director of the company I interviewed with two Thursdays ago. They told me two weeks, but they really liked me, so they wanted me to come in as soon as I got back from out of town. That probably means something great!

5. This is totally random, but I miss my cat Belle. I'm just used to her crawling all over me while I'm blogging or reading articles on the internet. I miss my bossy co-dependent cat.

6. I've been eating so unhealthily these last few days. I always lambasted the food in Tallahassee, but there are places I just had to go to and get food from that I can't get outside of here. Zaxby's, Chubby's, and Captain D's. I know they have them other places, but not Chicago, and they just speak FAMU to me. I have to decide tomorrow if I'm going to go to Hip Hop Fish and Chicken, Moe's, Firehaus, or Tropical Smoothie Cafe. Probably the last one. I'd love a smoothie and a caesar chicken wrap. That's not as healthy as it sounds.

7. In spite of my diet, I did get in a run while here. It was so hot though I got overheated, but I was glad to be able to keep working out and maintaining (in some form or another) my healthy living.

I'll blog more later. But right now I'm going to watch Enchanted for the 184th time and go to sleep.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Flying to Florida

I'm on the plane right now with Lion, heading down to Florida. I'm pretty excited for this trip. One note of interest. There are only five black people on this plane and we are all seated together. Like, literally in the same row. I guess it could be coincidence.
But back to this trip. Actually, I'll finish when we land. I'm being told to turn off my phone. But first, my flight attendant is a very sweet guy. I'm talking, "two snaps around the world and back" sweet. You are my favorite reader if you know that reference.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

America's Next Top Model, Top 7

This week, they jump right in with the challenege. The girls get these red bags and these symbols when they get to the house. The bags contain clothing that is for Warrior in Pink for breast cancer research and support. I own so many things with pink ribbons on it (bags, pens, water bottles, etc.) that I was loving this as soon as I saw what it wat.

Is anyone else irritated that they keep showing commentary that isn't from the same time as the show's episode? Seriously, Brittani's comment about Alexandria, she still had that horrible weave. WTF? And also, can they leave the emotional talking to someone other than Nigel? I love him, but that talking with his hands and that over-the-top earnestness on his face, sheesh. I'd prefer someone just being real and talking about it. Lots of people have been affected by breast cancer, but that was like when Samantha on SATC was practicing her speech for the banquet and Smith was like, "uh, maybe not." She got real (on TV, ha ha), and I"d like Nigel to do that as well.

Mikaela: She was moved to tears just thinking about her family's struggle with breast cancer. I'm glad her photo shoot started well and for once, I really loved her hair and makeup. She looked strong, but you could really see the emotion behind it. But you got to see why she was in the bottom two last week: no creativity.

She was "crazy for sales" and I honestly didn't expect much because she went in with such a negative attitude bashing Alexandria right before she went on. She should have been focusing on her idea and maybe she wouldn't have been overwhelmed when she got to set. Her photo was just okay. It was one her last shots and even then, if was just okay.

At this point, I'm rooting for her to go home. When she was in the bottom two, I was happy. That meant she was leaving since they were gonna give Brittani another chance.

Kasia: I don't know why but she's starting to annoy me. She's the same as always, I'm just this weird combo of nonplussed plus irritated. I think it was when she said she wanted to win the challenge so she could be a role model. All I thought was, "this is so not about you!" I didn't really get how her photo said "Heart", but whatever, Nigel seemed to like it.

They kind of glossed over her photo shoot. She was "crazy for hair". Mr. J liked that she thought out of the box, but I guess we'll see what all that frowning turns up in judging. They feel her risks paid off, so good for her. Whatev.

Molly: When she was talking about how much she hated Alexandria and they went to that clip about her worst moments over the last five weeks, I was like, "Ouch!" In my compassion for her, I kind of forgot why Molly had every right to hate this girl. But about her challenge photo, I really loved the ethereal look she put together. I guess it isn't hard to get "Angel Wings" right. But of course, she was thinking more about winning a challenge rather than the task at hand. Sigh.

She should have kept her mouth shut and let Brittani walk out on that plank all by herself cause Nigel was standing right there. She was "crazy for accessories" in her photo shoot. I liked the concept for her immediately. I was worried though once they got her accessorized and she was so clearly uncomfortable. But her photo was Ah-mazing! She didn't look at all awkward.

That ring biting she did at the end of the shoot turned out to be the money shot. I think her photo will be the best of the week. She ended up with runner up photo, and I'm happy with that. She pulled off a great photo and that's really what matters.

Brittani:  She's itching for the moment that Alexandria's "true colors" show up and they send her home. It's really too bad that she doesn't understand Alexandria, the previews told me this wasn't going to end well. On to her challenge photo, "I don't think I just do." I was with Nigel like, "whaaaaa?" She looked great, but I didn't really get warrior-against-breast-cancer. Oh Lord, tears. Whatever.

When she doesn't like someone, it brings out the worst in her. Damn, girl, get it together. You can't let your hatred for someone else bring you down. In that yelling match with Alexandria, Brittani came out looking like such a bitch. She made herself seem like all the things she's accusing Alexandria of. She was "crazy for shoes" in her photo shoot. I wasn't a fan of the way she went to show that at first. But the photographer loved it, so she'll probably get a good shot.

After the shoot, the girls were at the house the night before judging. Brittani gave a great (sarcasm) PSA about how much she hates Alexandria while wearing the Warriors in Pink bandana. Great job (wry). When Nigel brought up the argument during Alexandria's photo, I really hated her reaction. "That's fine." She doesn't understand that this is a business, not a personality contest. Unless of course you really suck, and again, she's making herself look bad. And when the tears came, I felt better because that meant she finally understood she had gone too far.

There's a time and a place to be a bitch. That wasn't it. I was glad when she left because she's showing how unprofessinal she can be. Tyra wasn't even phased because she has seen it all. I just love how Tyra was like, "you're having a panic attack? Uh huh. Well, let's look at your photo." Panic attacks are real, but she needs to get over herself. And they weren't into her photo. I wonder how much of that is because they weren't into her at that point. Tyra wanted her to go and they all wanted to give her a second chance.

I can only hope she'll fuck up again next week. I don't care about her bone structure. I want her to go back to being nice. But I doubt she can do that. I'm glad she was at least in the bottom two so she knows they really didn't like that.

Hannah: She managed to make that vague-ass symbol of "Spiral" come to life. She seemed nervous at the challenge photo shoot, but she looked great. I really liked her hair and makeup choices. Nigel called her un-memorable. I can get that, just look at how little I've had to say about her and I love her.

She was "crazy for handbags" for her shoot. I just couldn't imagine her garnerning enough gusto to give off crazy, and I was right. Too theatrical, definitely not Italian Vogue. The judges loved her photo though Tyra did point out that her film wasn't great. Which made me breathe a sigh of relief because I love her and want her to stick around.

Jaclyn: They could just have her narrate the entire episode. I usually hate squeaky voices, but I love hers. I could listen to this girl describe a box of baking soda. And she's so super cute. I love her hair and her mouth. I wanted her to win the challenge because of her story about her aunt. She knows this isn't about her and she wants to convey something meaningful to all the people who would see the campaign. I loved her photos and the reason behind her makeup. I think it was genius.

I love that she was so excited to be working with Eric Damon from Gossip Girl. He is an amazing stylist. She was "crazy for makeup" and I just know it was gonna be fabulous. The only downside was her mouth wasn't done perfectly in hot pink or bright red. It was perfectly smeared. I bet her photo is really inspired.

Her photo was great. Everyone loved it, it really was perfect for her, I don't mind that her lips weren't perfect. Did I mention I love her lips? If Molly doesn't get the best pic of the week, I think it will go to Jaclyn. And it did! I was happy for her. She's done a good job at just being her happy self and I'm proud of her.

Alexandria: That video montage of her worst moments were harsh. So harsh. But I guess in my compassion for her and her background, I'm able to just explain it away as her feeling like she needs to be tough to take a pre-emptive stand for herself in the house. What can I say? I like her strength. If people misinterpret that, it only makes her stronger. There's a part of me that makes me love her for that. I loved her symbol for the challenge, "Tree of Love", and she really designed it well with hair and makeup I think. That weird bottom lip is also starting to grow on me. And she embodied this strong, beautiful tree.

I just wish the girls understood her. When it comes to her, they are so freaking negative! Nigel called her performance "obvious" and he was right. But when you do on-the-nose, it has to be the best on-the-nose anyone has seen. And I think she did that. I was soooo happy when she won the challenge, and a freaking car! I know it's going to cause so much trouble in the house, but I don't care. This is about breast cancer, not how catty those chicks can be. I really think she handled herself well when Brittani attacked her. I wonder if she knew Nigel was standing nearby.

When she said she didn't get what she'd done to make the girls hate her so, I was like, um, "lack of self-awareness much?" She should know she's been arguing and fussing since she got there. But I guess if that's the environment she's used to, she didn't know that it could make people hate you. She was "crazy for faux fur". I think she can be animalistic, so I expected great things from this photo. And I think she pulled it off. Mr. J seemed happy.

They loved her photo, but didn't see the crazy in it. They weren't criticizing her as hard as they were Mikaela though. Then Nigel brought up the challenge photo shoot. I was so sad when Alexandria started crying. I know it was out of sheer embarassment. Poor girl. I was so happy when Anre Leon Talley told her he felt bad for her and she should put a smile on her face. That's the exact opposite of what Brittani wanted to happen I'm sure. Alexandria really came out looking good to the judges.

I know I had a lot to say this week, but it was a crazy week. I love this show!

American Idol, Top 9

They skipped having a Top 10 and I'm still excited about that because that means there will be 11 people on the American Idol tour this summer. That bit at the beginning with Steven Tyler's tribute to rock and roll was cute and over the top. I can't imagine him doing anything that isn't over the top.

Here are my categories:

I Will Be Ecstatic If You Win Because You're Amazing
Jacob Lusk: First of all, I love the song selection. Man in the Mirror is definitely top 3 for my favorite Michael Jackson songs. And I was really feeling the song, just like when Michael sang it. I love that he went for a song that really fit him because I think it made his performance better than if he was singing something that didn't speak to him to his core. I will not be happy if he doesn't make it to the final two.

Casey Abrams: still amazing as always. He's sound more like Paul than James with that softer tone that's less yelling. I love him playing the bass. I'm pretty unfamiliar with the song he sang, but it made me want to rush and download it. I just love his pitch and tone. And I'm glad he's sticking with the more groomed look.

Pian Toscano: this is one of my favorite Tina Turner songs that she chose to sing tonight. Of course she looked amazing, and she sounded fantastic. Better than fantastic. I wasn't sure how she wold do with a song that required all this extra depth and if she'd still have the same voice control. But she had that and more. I never seen someone with so much stage presence who was standing almost completely still. Her grit was much more my preference than what Haley was doing this week. She's like Whitney + Mariah + Christina. Just amazing. I would buy every album of hers just to hear what else she would sing and how great it would sound.

Paul McDonald: He really has grown on me. He's not my choice for one of the top people, but I would be more than happy if he managed to win without my full-hearted support. Listening to him sing is really something, but watching him takes it over the top. I love his style (not his clothes) and his whole persona. His voice is so special and his stage presence is so effervescent. I couldn't ask for more. I just get excited when I watch him perform. He may pass by Casey in my heart if he keeps this up.

Great Performance, But I'm Not Convinced Yet
Lauren Alaina: I love her, I truly do. And I'm continually impressed by her ability to sing songs by women who are supposedly impossible to cover by the average singer. But I don't know that I can see her winning. She doesn't surprise me each week. This week was par for the course, and I want to see something new. I want her to take me to the next level. I know she's an amazing singer, but would I buy anything past her debut album, not if this is all she has to offer. I love her voice and style. If she tries something new next week, I'll be back to rooting for her to be a winner.

James Durbin: Just him singing in the intro video had me swooning. I was really looking forward to actually be able to hear him singing this week. I was all for this taking a chance and continuing to set himself apart from the other contestants. I've never been a huge fan of him for winner-potential, but that's only because I had forgotten how truly amazing his voice is. I love the vocal and emotional range he possesses. I am back on the Durbin Bandwagon. He keeps changing it up like this, and I'll be rooting for him to take it all.

Scotty McCreery: If it were up to me, he'd be making it to the end too. Just like with everyone else, I was looking to see more than what he has offered in the past. He did that this week. Still definitely country, but with this rock/gospel extra bit put into it. It was very enjoyable. He was so Elvis-y and I loved it. I hope he has was it takes to win over America singing only country music. I certainly hope so. But I'd love to see if he can do even more mainstream stuff and then I'll be picking him for final 3.

I Liked It, But I Didn't Love It
Stefano Langone: I agreed with the intro video that this song would sing him instead of the other way around if he wasn't careful. But as soon as he started singing, I wasn't worried. I mostly hated his phrasing, but I love his voice and really enjoyed the song. I can't really explain why, but I just didn't really connect with him this week. He'll get my vote, but not as many as before. I do love him, but I love others more. And at the end of the day, I just liked, I didn't love the song. On reality TV, all it takes is one non-perfect week and you're gone. Who knew phrasing could kill a whole song for me? And again, I'm by myself in saying anything other than complete praise. It happens. Well, not by myself. Randy usually agrees with my negativity.

I Change My Mind, I'm Not A Fan This Week
Haley Reinhart: What can I say, that gritty voice is wearing me down. I normally like when she intersperses it into songs. I know she was singing Janice Joplin this week, but damn, I felt I had cheese graters on my ears. It was painful. I liked it, I did. But I just can't.... deal with that yelling. I know yellers tend to do well in this competition and afterward, Fantasia, Jennifer Hudson, Kelly Clarkson. But sigh. I just didn't like it. I know I'm alone it that, and that's okay.

I voted for: Jacob, Casey, Lauren, James, Scotty, Pia, Stefano, and Paul. Right now, I want the top three to be: Jacob, Casey, and Pia. If I had to rank them in order of who I thought was the worst to the best right now it would be:
9. Haley Reinhart
8. Stefano Langone
7. Scotty McCreery
6. Lauren Alaina
5. James Durbin
4. Paul McDonald
3. Casey Abrams
2. Pia Toascano
1. Jacob Lusk

I know that may be against the love folks might have for an individual performer or another, but I like my arrangement. I really love Stefano, but I'm thinking about whose album I would buy and really listen to. If they all made 9 albums, Pia and Jacob are the only ones I'd buy all 9 from.

Surprises And More Surprises

I came down to St. Louis with Easy on Sunday night and I'm flying from here to Florida Friday morning. I'm very excited about my trip, but I'm also just glad to be here after two weeks away in Chicago. Which is where I live. I live in Chicago. All my friends calls me a St. Louis resident, but I live in Chicago.

But on to the surprises the title told you were coming. Easy decided he wanted to surprise me Wednesday evening when he was done with work. He pushed it up to Monday cause his weekly gig got cancelled for this week. He took me Jared and... no we didn't buy and engagement ring. Calm down people. He bought me a Pandora charm bracelet for Christmas and he's been slowly but surely filling it ever since. He got me four new pieces for it. Usually it's two, so that was great!

Then we went to the movies. I love going to the movies, but Easy and I don't go very often, so it was a nice surprise. We went to see Source Code which I've been dying to see. I won't ruin the ending, but I'll just say my natural inclination toward optimism and far-reaching science were both fulfilled. Then I wanted a burger, so we went to get me a burger. It was a great evening.

At first, Easy suggested he come up with another surprise for me for Wednesday, but I told him, I'd prefer to come up with a surprise for him. I'm very excited about this surprise. I feel like it was exactly something he'd want and appreciate. I dropped Easy off at his school Wednesday morning and kept the car. His roommate's fiancee is in town, so she rolled with me to Wal-Mart, where I picked up some supplies. I got excited because of all the plans.

The plan was to pick him up from school at 4:30 and ask him to drive to where he wanted to take me ice skating. Wednesday was the first really nice day in St. Louis, so I figured a picnic would be great. I took him on a picnic when we first started dating and told him that's what life would be like with me, so I figured I'd better take him on another and keep my word.

Also, Easy and I have been talking about marriage and engagements and the like. One of those discussions led to a joke that he wanted me to propose first, and I said I would with a lucky charms ring. So while at Wal-Mart, I bought some Lucky Charms, whipped out my sewing kit, and made him a ring. I figured I would propose at the picnic. We wouldn't be engaged afterwards, but he would know I was more than ready for him to propose back to me. It was cheesy and sweet and funny, just like how we are together.

I wanted the picnic to be romantic and fun, but I also wanted to get home in time to watch American Idol and America's Next Top Model. I love Easy because he gets my crazy and wouldn't think it was un-romantic to rush home at 6:30 pm. When we finally got back, Easy's roommate and his fiancee were laughing at us and fake gagging over our romantic picnic. Ha ha, reminds me of the reaction most of my friends would have.

But you want to know about the picnic don't you? Well, I picked him up from school, and he drove to the park. We scoped out a great place that I probably couldn't find again, but it was near the golf course, the St. Louis History Museum, and a soccer field. I handed him the basket and told him to dig in. He saw the sweet tea, the potato chips and decided that he could break the rules just a bit to enjoy those things.

Then he saw the apple slices, baby carrots, and grapes, and was ppleased. The he saw the jewelry box. I'm not sure if he recognized it is the box he normaly keeps his cufflinks in or not. But he was like, "whaaaa?" Then he opened it and saw the Lucky Charms ring. He burst out laughing at the sight of it because I guess he truly never expected that I would actually work out making that ring.

Once he stopped laughing, I leaned over to him and told him how much I loved him and that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with him. Then I asked him to marry me and he said yes! Like I said, we're not engaged, but we're fake-affianced, haha. He made a joke that now he has to propose since he said he'd propose the day after I did. I told him that wasn't going to happen cause when would he get a ring and also he hadn't asked my parents for permission yet and that was really important to me.

He told me not to worry about it and then we just moved on and settled into our picnic. I had the supplies to make lettuce wraps since his current diet plan doesn't include carbs. Iceburg lettuce, deli sliced honey roasted turkey, swiss cheese, and ranch dressing. we ate and laughed and enjoyed each other's company. It was a great way to spend the first real day of spring here in St. Louis.

Easy and I were both patting ourselves on the backs for how successful our surprises had gone. We're self-congratulatory like that. It's why we match.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

My Mom Double Booked Me!

I've been meaning to tell this story for a while. It actually happened like two-three weeks ago, right when I got back from St. Louis and my mother and I had plans with my mom for Saturday afternoon. We were going to have a girls' day out. I assumed that meant good food, perhaps a movie, and also a new blouse or dress or something for the both of us. But that's not at all what happened!

She had also made plans with my father. They are contemplating moving/renovating. While their sorting out all their options, they are at least making some moves. They went to go look at model houses as a way to explore the option of having a house built.

I ask my father where my mother is early Saturday afternoon and he tells me she'll be home soon and they'll be on their way. I'm like, "where are y'all going. We have plans." And he's like, "I don't know what plans you think you have, but we have plans." We quickly realize my mother double booked us!

I knew their plans trumped ours, so I quickly inserted myself into their plans. Going to look at model homes sounded like fun to me. When my mother came home, I fussed a bit at her while she chuckled and exchanged looks with my father. I thought it wasn't funny at all and demanded we reschedule our girls day out. We did just that and then the three of us headed out to see some homes.

We had fun looking at homes, comparing what each of us thought were important factors in a home. My father, ever the practical one, was concerned about homes with two many stairs since where ever they move will likely be their home into a very old age, if not their final home. This was reasonable, but didn't get us away from the charm of the vaulted ceiling created by a second floor balcony overlooking the family room.

Even though my mom double booked us, we still had fun all hanging out together. And my mom totally made it up to me the next time just she and I went out. This is why I love hanging out with my parents. Something interesting always happens and there's always a twist. By the way, if you're looking for a home you can build from the ground up and don't mind a commute, start in New Lennox and Frankfurt, IL

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Dancing With The Stars, Top 10

I was sad to see Mike Catherwood go, but then again I wasn't. I was sad because I would much prefer Wendy Williams to leave. But I wasn't sad because he got the lowest scores and was one of the least-known stars, it was his fate to leave. He would have had to be an amazing dancer to make that first cut. But I feel good about this week's performances and am excited to share my opinions because I know everyone cares so much, ha ha. Here are my categories:

Amazing Dancing, Should Get Top Scores
Mark Ballas and Chelsea Kane (Cha-Cha): I just always look forward to Mark's choreography and I like Chelsea and her dancing. Her emotional story about the song written for her was cute. Having dated a couple of musicians and having had songs written for me, I can understand how amazing that is (Easy, your song is by far the best!). And I was interested to hear this song and see what Mark would come up with to please both the judges and the audience. She looked amazing in her outfit and I really enjoyed the dancing from the moment they started. It was young and happy, just like her. And the song really wasn't half bad either. I didn't really feel like her body movement was as good as it could be, but she was good at being sexy, and I really enjoyed the performance.
Score: (7,8,8). Pretty good for week 3, and after only the first elimination. I guess I liked them more than the judges did.

Kym Johnson and Hines Ward (Samba): I just love the song selection for this week for him. Hearing his story about his mom wasn't a surprise because I read about it when I looked him up after the cast for this season was announced. And I'm happy that this song is really happy. And if anyone can pull of a Week 3 Samba, it's Hines. As soon as they started dancing, I was enchanted. Did I mention I love this song? There were moments when he wasn't perfectly on beat, but he was never really off it. And I felt like getting up and dancing with them, which is always my rubric for whether a Samba is really on point. And I really loved the support they showed for him in the audience. It was perfect, but it was so great, that didn't really matter.
Score: (9,8,8). Great scores, just like I expected. They were just sooooo good. Really enjoyable.
 Dmitry Chaplin and Petra Nemcova (Waltz): I would have been quite shocked if her story wasn't about the tsunami and losing her fiance. I wasn't hugely satisfied with her performance last week, but I had hope for her this week. Her story was really amazing about her recovering from what happened to her in Thailand and making something good happen for other people out of it. I'm looking forward to this dance because she does uplifting and elegant well. This dance gave me a sense of peace and was really enjoyable to watch. Petra should give a master class on clean lines with her arms. I loved it, I think it was one of her best dances.
Score: (8,9,8). Yup, really amazing scores. Just like I expected.

Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Kirstie Alley (Rumba): I'm really looking forward to her video and her dancing. I had no idea she had lost so much right around her big break. I would be devastated if that happened to me. I guess the Rumba is just the dance for sex and also to celebrate death. How pagan, but I admit I'm intrigued. I want to see if Kirstie can pull off this Rumba, I bet she can. I was freaking out when he fell, mostly cause I was wondering how he was dragging her big ass across the floor. I hope he didn't really injure himself like Cheryl's partner Christian did a few seasons ago. But Maks was a trooper and finished the dance. Kirstie was the ultimate professional, showing her ability to get back on track once it was clear Maks was going to continue dancing. I'm so glad they finished that dance because she really was amazing. Her hip action was really on point as were her legs. And even her arms and hands were good. If I weren't deducting for that fall, I'd say it was one of the best of the night, but of course I'm biased toward Kirstie, so I don't know if that's accurate or not. I wonder if Maks was over-doing the limp for sympathy as soon as the dance was done or if he really was just professional enough to keep it going for Kirstie. I'd almost prefer the former over the latter because I'd hate for him to be injured.
Score: (7,7,7). Those were good scores considering they lost almost 20 seconds of dancing. I know the scores would have been way higher had they not fallen.

Really Good Dancing But Not The Best
Cheryl Burke and Chris Urban (or is it Irving?) (Rumba): I love the bedroom dance. People draped in sheets, all I think is Toga! Toga! I'm not a huge fan of Chris, but I see the potential. And I love his story about his mom. I'm a sucker for momma stories cause I love my momma. Every time someone does a rumba that's not sexy, Len fusses and complains. When they said in the video they were going non-sexy, I was worried for their scores. But if they have a chance, it's with a momma theme. When they started dancing, I was impressed. If he keeps improving like this, I will be a fan of his, a huge fan, in a couple weeks. I was glad the judges weren't pissy about the dance not being sexy. Yay for Chris and Cheryl.
Scores: (7,7,7). These scores are really good, but I know he can do better.

Louis van Amstel and Kendra Wilkinson (Rumba): I have to say that I just really love her personality. For the first time, I'm really a fan of a couple that Louis is a part of for more than just the laughs and pride they provide. She's a pretty good dancer and I was looking forward to see what they would come up with for this week. I wondered if her emotional story would discuss her bunny-ness, and it wasn't, just a situation influenced by it. It was about love, which makes me happy. As they were dancing, I was marvelling at her legs and trying to not look at her arms and hands. She was better than I expected though cause the Rumba is a hard dance. I think the dance definitely told a love story and I just love her so much, did I mention that?
Scores: (8,7,8). The judges seemed to really like her and the dance, but somebody needs to get Bruno to keep it in his pants, ha ha.

Karina Smirnoff and Ralph Macchio (Rumba): When they said he was doing the Rumba, I figured he was also celebrating someone's death and how he's grown since then. I have to admit, I was happy it wasn't about death, it was about holding onto special moments, particularly his wedding anniversary. I like Ralph and his dancing and his personality is growing on me more and more. I expect if nothing else, he'll have the character of the dance down. I don't know if I care for the song, but I was loving his dancing. His feet were really on point. He can teach the other half of Petra's Master class on clean lines, ha ha. Unfortunately, his hands are still funky, though less funky than before. And it was nice to see a romantic Rumba. Really great. I think this was so amazing, and worthy of pretty good scores.
Scores: (7,7,7). I think I agree with these scores. I hoped for one 8, but he can do better with the little details I think.

Just Okay, You Should/Could Have Done Better
Chelsie Hightower and Romeo (Rumba): I just love looking at him, and the good dancing doesn't hurt either. His story was unexpected. I didn't know he had dealt with the loss of two people he was close with as a child. I guess it really defines you as a young person when that happens. But I was very much looking forward to what he and Chelsie would do with the music out on the dance floor since they have amazing chemistry. After Cheryl got away with a non-sexy Rumba, I was hoping Chelsie could make it through too. I thought the dance was good, but I honestly didn't think it was great. I'm usually less-than-satisfied with people's Rumbas though, so I'm not surprised. Plus his arm lines, were just awful. And the judges are okay with non-sexy Rumbas. I guess you can't criticize someone for honoring a death.
Scores: (7,6,7). I pretty much agreed with these scores. Romeo can dance and personality his way to all 8s at this stage of the competition. So I will vote for him and hope he does better next week.

Anna Trebunskaya and Sugar Ray Leonard (Paso Doble): Last week, I was like, meh, at least that's the way I remember it. I didn't hold much hope for him this week. My daddy was disappointed that the man with the best footwork in the ring couldn't make that translate to the dance floor. I didn't know that much about his career, but I take my daddy's word. He's gonna have to do something amazing to reverse my opinion. I do like the song choice, and if it gets him pumped, I say try whatever works. And the dance selection should make life easier for him in terms of getting into the character of the dance. He still doesn't have enough punch and his feet are funky. But he has improved. He's getting better slowly but surely.
Score: (7,6,7).  His highest scores so far, but he still has a ways to go.

Seriously, Why Did You Come On This Show?
Tony Dovolani and Wendy Williams (Foxtrot): I'm glad she went first so I could get her out of the way. I have little hope for her to improve since she thinks they deserved 10s. Delusional lady. And she wants to focus on her career, how emotional. I guess. I don't have anything nice to say, so I'll just get on to the dance. I usually hate her a 10, and this week, I only hate her an 8. They keep giving her ballroom dances and she'll be alright. She's required not to move, so her inability to move doesn't stand out as much. Still hate her dancing. Next.
Score: (5, 5, 5). I'm not surprised by those scores; she's horrible!

I voted for Chelsea and Mark, Chris and Cheryl, Kendra and Louis, Romeo and Chelsie, Hines and Kym, .
I think the Top Three will be: Chelsea and Mark, Hines and Kym,

Monday, April 4, 2011

American Idol, Top 11, Again

Just a disclaimer, I wrote this post before the elimination show, so I'm going to post it as if I don't know who's going home already. I'm not editing what I originally wrote.

Can I first say three things? 1. I'm super happy they have all top 11 people on the American Idol tour this summer. I may actually try and see the show this year. 2. I'm looking forward to the double elimination next week, although I fear that Naima won't make it through if her song selection isn't up to par. 3. Why do people like Thia?! What am I missing? All the smiles in the world can't make up for her boring ass stage presence. Pia can stand still and be interesting, but not her.
Okay, rant over. Now on to the Top 11. Here are my categories.

Great, You Could Win
Scotty McCreery: what can I say? I love him. His singing makes me love country and feel all warm inside. He did justice to elton john's one country song. And that deep note at the end made me want to do something like throwing my panties on stage, except not illegal (he's only 17).

Paul McDonald: his voice I fall in love with more and more with each passing week. He kept the thing I love best about Elton John music: the piano. Just wonderful voice and guitar and everything. Except that suit.

Pia Toscano: she's singing one of my favorite songs by elton john. I was ready to love it. Reminds me of when forest whitaker was on snl after the oscar deal. Sing another ballad, don't be scurred girl! She looked and sounded amazing as usual. Like a regular pitched mariah carey. I just made that comparison. It happened. And best of all, her backup choir didn't have robes!

Lauren Turner: looks like song selection had a lot to do with who I really loved this week. Lauren's voice is just perfect for this song. A real casual version with less emotion amnd more country sent chills to my arms. Just great.

Casey Abrams: as soon as he started singing, I was loving it. His voice is like butter. And the freshened up look really helped. He's back to my sexy Santa/Seth Rogan mashup. I don't care what you think, it's a sexy combo. Back to the song, I was loving the soft rock take on it. It gave it a surprising depth and vigor. And it built and took me with it. Take notes Thia.

Jacob Lusk: this man can do no wrong. He's my reincarnated Luther and I love every moment. 'Nuff said.

Haley Reinhart: I didn't what to expect from her, I just know I haven't been too big of a fan recently. But I finally loved her. She couldn't have bounced harder than sitting on a piano suggests, but that was my only complaint. It was like a flower child singing the song, lol. Amazing voice, and her growl thing finally felt in place to me.

Liked It, Didn't Love It
Naima Adedapo: I love reggae music, but I only liked her version of this song. She gets points for creativity and originality. But I'm just not a huge fan of hers in her lower range. It was a great performance though, not boring like I thought it could be.

Stefano Langone: I thought I wouldn't like it, but I did. He really took control of that song. I wanted to love it, but I was too distracted by him fighting to keep his eyes open. I'm hoping he gets another chance though. I will be voting like crazy for him to give him that chance.

James Durbin: I couldn't really hear him. I love that song and he looked like he was rocking it. I loved the end of it more than the whole. He was amazing, I think. Had I heard him, he'd be in the above category.

You Will Not Win Singing Like That
Thia Megia: when she started singing, I was feeling it, but then it went away. The song didn't build like it was supposed to. The highlights of that song that make me love it just weren't there. Her voice is good and all, but my favorite part of that song was the piano. I'm still bored. Sorry Thia.

Like I said, no "Bad" category this week. These folks are just amazing. This week, I voted for Scotty, Stefano, Naima, Pia, James, Lauren, Casey, Jacob, and Haley. The people I'd like to see most make it far are: Jacob, Casey, Lauren, Pia, and Stefano.

America's Next Top Model, Top 8

This week, the girls focused on what type of persona they would convey if famous, from archetype of model to interacting with fans. I thought it was a cute and interesting thing to focus on. And I loved the muddy photo shoot with the blonds versus the brunettes. Only possible because they got rid of all the minorities and redheads (a minority themselves in the fashion world). I have to say I'm very satisfied with these particular girls being the Top 8. Now on to my thoughts on each girl.

Mikaela: I have higher hopes for her shoot now that she's gotten to the root of her insecurity. Still hate the eyebrows, but she seems to have come out of her shell. The judges were harsh, but she improved this week. I was pleased with her progress.
Couture with hidden bombshell was her archetype. I don't see the bombshell, I'd prefer they had just stuck with couture. But at least telling her she should be a bombshell helped to give her an identity.

Kasia: a bit uncomfortable in behavior, but fantastically comfortable in her body.
Bombshell + Couture: I get it. Body + attitude.

Monique: her negative side is starting to show, but with, I still like her. If only cause she knows how to handle Alexandria. Um, sour grapes much? I was a huge fan, but the editing makes her an asshole this week. And she needs to stop acting "over it". She's killing me! I was such a fan before this week.
Bombshell: oh yeah. I agree.

Molly: still a trooper for dealing with that hair. Who cares if she's complaining, that shit sucks. I don't mind yet.
I also missed her archetype. Did they even say it?

Brittani: um, she just didn't stand out to me this week. I still love the haircut. But when it came to the photo shoot, she certainly stood out to the photographer! And I admit, she had moments of brilliance. I was hoping they'd show her individual shots in judging, but it's cool.
Couture: that face and hair, of course.

Hannah: I just think she's so sweet. I love her. Don't have much to say, I just hope she keeps doing what she does best.
I missed her category. Anyone catch it? I'd guess girl next door.

Jaclyn: also sweet, super sweet. I hope she's stays sweet. Still love the bright lip and curly hair. She photographs amazingly. I wonder if they'll start to criticize her because the person they see in front of them carries less oomph than what they see in her film.
Girl Next Door: with a face like that, it's her only option, really.

Alexandria: I'm getting more of her story, I just wish the other girls knew. They might understand why she's so tough and is combative. She's been very general til now, not focusing her toughness on any one girl, but Monique has finally gotten on her bad side. This could get interesting. She has a nice side and no one sees it. Poor girl.
Edgy Bombshell: she seems more edgy to me. But I guess with those lips, she has bombshell potential.

This week, they sent Monique home. Yay! She was killing me with the eye rolling. I could barely remember Mikaela before this week, but I'm happy she stayed. I was so glad they kept Alexandria. I was worried. And I hope she gets a chance next week to explain shy she can come off as such a bitch. According to the previews, she has it out with Brittani at panel That should be quite interesting.

More Of My Really Busy Life

I'm picking up right where I left off in my last post. I'll start with Friday to explain about my fabulously busy weekend.


Friday was a pretty busy day. I had a hair appointment in the morning to get my locs tightened. While I was there, I got a call from a friend. We got close while I was dating her cousin, the Ex. I haven't spoken to him in years, but she and I are still good friends. She called to ask me a favor. I agreed and cancelled my plans to head back to the hospital to do her this favor. I picked up my 9 year old cousin and headed out to St. Charles, IL. They were having a Mary Kay conference there and the Ex's cousin was a part of it. I was to pick up her two boys (ages 4 and 0) and take them to her mother-in-law's house for the weekend. The Ex's cousin was behind schedule and she needed my help. Me and my cousin drove out there, got the boys, and headed back to the city. We were supposed to go to the movies, but that got postponed because of our errand and unexpected traffic. By the time we dropped the boys off, we had to head out to the bowling alley where my league bowls on Friday nights. That night at the bowling alley was amazing. My team, which is in second place, was bowling the first place team. They were ahead of us by 6 pts, the slimmest margin they've had all season. We were excited because if we got all 7 pts (the max a team can get in one night), we would take the lead for the first time this season. There's only three weeks left in the season, so now was the time to make our move. There was only one problem, we never beat them. The most we ever get is 2 pts. But we pulled together and won! They helped by bowling below average and we took first place! It was so exciting because I didn't think it was possible because we've never been able to win all three game against them! So now we just have to maintain for a few weeks. I'm hopeful, but my team has to bowl without me this coming Friday, so I hope it turns out okay.

My 9 year old cousin and I made plans to hang out Saturday since our Friday plans didn't work out. But my mother and I had already made a commitment to take my grandmother shopping. So I invited my cousin along for some three-generation style bonding and offered to take her to the movies after. She wanted to go bowling instead, so that was our plan. Of course, my grandmother is the world's slowest shopper. I had no idea of this, but it is true. At the end of it, she had some really nice clothes that were just her style, nice quality, and fit way better than what she had owned since before she lost so much weight. Of course by this time, the day was nearly over. I had to get over to my friends' house to help setup because the husband was throwing the wife a surprise 30th birthday party. I've known the husband forever because we grew up in the same church, and the wife is a welcome addition to our church family. Michelle was expecting me there at like 6. That wasn't even an option by the time we got my cousin back to her house. My mom and I stayed there and hung out with her brother (my uncle) and his family. We chatted and watched movies and played with my cousin's (not the 9 year old) new baby. It was good family time, but by 7:30, I finally got my mother out of there so I could get home and dressed and over to the surprise party. Michelle was heading home to change and so she picked me up and I rode with her over there. We got there with just enough time to spare to set up the last few things and get everyone organized to yell out "Surprise!" when she came to the door. The surprise went well and the party kicked off nice. There was lots of good food, varied drinks, a great cake (tres leche), great music, and pretty enjoyable company. Easy was coming to town because he had a recording session Sunday, so he came up right after his gig on Saturday and came ot the birthday party. Everyone was happy to see him, none more than me of course. I think the last two weeks were the longest we'd been apart since he got back from Europe. We hung out at the party, then left aroud 1 am. There's lots of funny stories from the party, but I'll keep them to myself to protect the guilty, ha ha.

I wanted to go to church Sunday, but I was just so tired after the long week I'd had, I just stayed at Easy's house while he went to church. I played with his neices and chatted with his sister. He brought lunch back and his mom got back around the same time. We spent some time with his family until it was time to head up north to go to the recording session. We stopped by my house and hung out with my family while I was getting my stuff together. Then we headed up north. Camille met us up there since she had never heard Easy play and so that she and I could catch up. She didn't get to the surprise party on Saturday til after Easy and I left because she was at a bachelorette party for another church member of ours. She was telling me about the bachelorette party and the craziness that I'd missed by leaving the party early. When Easy started recording we went to listen to him. He sounded amazing, of course. Then Camille had to leave cause she had to go study. I stayed until the end of the session, then Easy and I got right on the road to St. Louis. It was a pretty easy drive and we got back in great time.

Now, I'm just enjoying my time with him before I go to Florida this weekend.

I'm really just so happy that I had so much happen that I literally wasn't home with time to blog. Being that busy makes me excited. I made moves with friends, family, hobbies, and career. I have this huge smile on face.

Even if I don't get a job offer from the interview, even if my team doesn't stay in first place, even if my friends and I don't stay this close with all the changes upcoming in each of our lives, taking steps toward what I want is what is important. Just having tangible proof that all these things are possible is huge for me right now. It's easy to stay hopeful and optimistic when it seems like things are right on the verge of working out better than you could have imagined.

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